Sunday, 2 August 2009

Sunday - Coffee And Cake!




New And Relisted Listings on Etsy - Click an image to visit the corresponding listing



Another late one I'm afraid! More than likely on time for most of you across the water, but here in the UK it is now 2.20pm and so far today all I have achieved is a scan of a fake wall for my other half, addictive checking of my newest Treasury and mouldy courgette clippings... Although I did get an amazing photo of a bizarre bug earlier. He's going into my queue of edits... All in all it's been a slow day of a slowing mother. Seem to be getting increasingly tireder as the minutes whip by me. Nevertheless I have an article to write! Today we'll discuss the well known social networking site, http://twitter.com/.



Networking PART 2 - Twitter If any of you have braved this leap in the world of marketing, I think I'll have a lot of nodding heads when I say my first encounter of the networking site almost floored me with fear. I'm sure my first tweets were full of clumsy related banter of the sort actually... I think the most intimidating thing about Twitter isn't so much what the hell you need to do to make it work, but the idea of whether the millions of people at your disposal would give you any consideration. I'm sure you will have discovered as a newbie, not many people will begin to follow you if you haven't mastered the new power in your hands! I have to say though it's pretty easy to work out in terms of tweeting. Once you're set up, you can visit the homepage to "tweet" to your hearts content, as long as the bites of your mind are 140 characters in length. You are able to check personalised messages layed out on the right of the page, which also have this character limitation, and you can also find out who is tweeting about you and what they've said by visiting the @"yourtwittername" link above your messages. To view only your tweets, just click on your profile at the top navigation, and to view your followers tweets, just go back to the home link. Easy as pie.



But how to make yourself known? Well the trick really isn't to find whomever you feel like in the world, but to target your audience via relevent keywords. There are loads of third party style sites that run these "myspace" - like trains for people to jump on and gain followers. This works... you get loads of followers via these methods don't get me wrong! but to be fair this isn't good if you expect all of your new follower gain to share an interest in crocheted teapot covers, or baby hats; whatever it is you're trying to give some attention... Not everyone on these trains share the same interests, and may only want to have a large follower gain, and won't necessarily follow you back if you follow them (try and keep your follower ratio between 1:1 and 1.2:1 - following to followers. It'll keep things consistant for you in terms of Twitter follows).



However, you have fabulous sites like http://twibes.com/ which connects to your Twitter account and allows you to join "target" groups for you to post your specific tweets to people that will definitely have an interest in your stuff. For example, I am part of the photography and Etsy groups and I regularly post tweets on there when i update my store, knowing that both Etsy users and photography enthusiasts will find them and more than likely look at them. Compared to just any old person. The beauty about Twibes is you can also allow your tweets to go through Twitter aswell so your tweets will blast themselves into 2 venues, which is more exposure at the end of the day. Bonus. I'd recommend everyone to join it if you're serious about using Twitter.



On Twitter itself, the best way for you to get people to notice you like I say is to make sure your tweets include relevent keywords and if you can, link to your store, or items etc. If users search for particular keywords that you've used, you can bet your tweet will pop up infront of them if the timing is right, and if you have a link they'll check it out. Baring in mind that loads of people will use your keyword too so just like Etsy, it's a case of being bumped down the pile as time goes on. If you're lucky and people like your tweets, they will more than likely "retweet" (RT) your post which means they're offering further exposure of your tweet. That is simply forwarding your tweet with RT @"yourtwittername" at the start of it (like with me - @moonangelnay would direct the tweet at me, like emailing in a way), so people know who is being retweeted and the person being retweeted will be aware of your gesture :) An example that i've used today is.



"check out the beautiful new fine #art and #abstract photo prints on my #etsy store! http://bit.ly/fyZIt"



So anyone checking out any words in my tweet will probably come across it and may or may not follow me, check my links etc... If they retweet it on their own profile it'll look like this



"RT @moonangelnay check out the beautiful new fine #art and #abstract photo prints on my #etsy store! http://bit.ly/fyZIt"



So keywords! make them relevant to what you're about! Now another great thing you'll notice on twitter are the use of # or hashtags. This is a popular way to catagorise trends to follow. You'll notice my example tweet has a few. Notice how they are very specific. #Art, #Abstract, #Etsy... if I had more room I could have included #Prints and #Photo but that's excessive. There are tonnes of hashtag trending topics. I wouldn't go overboard with it though. There is an invisible etiquette to hashtag use. I had someone complain to me once that it's only supposed to be used to promote other people, yet many people say that it can be used how you like and you see it being used in alsorts of ways all over twitter. So far I havent come across anything that suggests rules for it, considering that I don't think twitter made up the idea. I think it's a to each their own thing. But it's nothing to be afraid of. When it comes down to it, hashtags are very good at narrowing down trends to catagories that many people will use or search for and as long as you dont go nuts with it, it can work with your tweets nicely. If you don't like it, don't use them. I have noticed that regardless of the hashtag, your keywords will fall within the trending topics anyway.



Some people get infuriated at the 140 character rule when it comes to wanting to share links. It's easily overcome by sites that offer link shortening. http://bit.ly/ is my favourite as like Twibes, it can link to your Twitter directly and you can post straight from it. You can also monitor your links and post them again if you want, without having to go through the process of typing or copying and pasting the original link again. You'll notice an example of a bit.ly shortened link in my example tweet. If you follow it, it leads you straight to my Etsy store, as promised in the tweet. Perfect.



So that's all there is to it really. Other than that i'd suggest posting your twitter links around to share in the Etsy forums, link to it (even via a widget) on all of your pages, blogs, social network profiles etc, and make sure you keep your tweets interesting! Don't always go on about your work. You're artists, not machines! Just like in the blogging world you can meet great people on Twitter, and being personal and tweeting about everyday things, or interesting things you have found, debates, news etc will keep lots of people keen on what you have to say!



OK! So thats that. Wow its 3.40pm where I am now. I thought I'd spend longer on this but I'm glad I can get it out now for everyone! Don't forget to Google Connect with me, to keep updated on my blog, and if you're on twitter, come by and follow me on mine! Just search for @moonangelnay or click here http://twitter.com/moonangelnay.



I look forward to writing my next networking article. Don't forget tomorrow is my first treasury like feature for my blog! Monday Magic! Otherwise come back next Sunday for part 3 of Sunday Coffee And Cake!



moonangelnay xxx

3 comments:

Jenny said...

Thanks so much for this one! I've been fussing around with twitter for almost a week, and never understood why people put the # in front of some words! Also checked out twibes, and joined a couple of relevant groups. Loved that info - thanks!!!
Jenny (BlackRockDesign)

2 Virgos Designs said...

beautiful pics!

DreamTree said...

Great post on twitter! I've been a little intimidated by the whole thing and really want to get signed up now. I like the example tweets you gave for format and the hash tag thing (that was confusing to me).

Thanks for sharing! :)

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